New pending patent applications are published by the USPTO on Thursdays. Both of today's Spotlight Applications concern aspects of digital rights management. Assigned to Konica Minolta (JP), the first application discloses access control techniques for selected document contents using document layers and access key sequence. Assigned to Adobe, the second application discloses techniques for digital rights management using organizational associations (See also related applications 20170278206 and 20170277868 also published today).
20170270283, "Access control for selected document contents using document layers and access key sequence," assigned to Konica Minolta (JP).
In a digital rights management system, layers are defined for each document and user permissions are specified for each layer, to control user access at the layer-level. The layers are ordered by depth, where a layer completely contained inside another layer is deemed deeper than the other layer. The layers are encrypted in a deep-to-shallow order, each by its own encryption key. The entire document is then encrypted. When a user requests access to a document, the system generates an ordered sequence of encryption keys based on the user's access rights for each layer. The document open program on the user's client computer attempts to decrypt the various layers using the ordered sequence of keys. The client program and the system's key sequence generating algorithm are designed to give the result that only layers that the user has access to are successfully decrypted and displayed at document open time.
20170278205, "Digital rights management using organizational associations," assigned to Adobe.
Digital rights management techniques that leverage organizational associations are described, such as a job title of a user, department in which the user works, and so forth. A digital medium environment is configured to control access to at least on item of content by digital rights management functionality embedded as part of the content. Data is collected that describes organizational traits associated with a request received from the user to access the content. A determination is made from the data using a digital rights management module embedded as part of the content as to whether the organizational traits meet specified traits of an organization behavior of a digital rights management policy enforced by the digital rights management module for the at least one item of the content. Responsive to a determination that the specified traits are met, access is permitted to the least one item of the content by the embedded digital rights management module.